I always enjoy a good anthology film. The mix of stories means that if one section is a bit weak it doesn’t last long. The shorter stories also mean that the stories are condensed to the bare bones
The framing story here is the investigation the disappearance of a famous actor who lived at a large creepy house with a morbid history. The first three stories are all tales of the fate of the house’s previous occupants that the police sergeant tells Detective Inspector Holloway (John Bennett) about.
Method for Murder: A writer Charles Hillyer (Denholm Elliott) moves into the house with his wife Alice (Joanna Dunham) and starts working on his latest book. To help himself he creates a sketch of his main character; an ugly brutish killer called Dominick. When Charles starts seeing the man that he created he starts to think that he is losing his grip on reality.
Waxworks: Philip Grayson (Peter Cushing) moves to the house to retire for a quiet life in the country and to get over the recent death of the woman he loved. One day he visits a horror museum in town and is captivated by the figure of Salome. He is disturbed by his feelings and tries to stay away. Then Philip gets a visit from Neville Rogers (Joss Ackland), an old friend and love rival. They take a trip into town and Neville insists on visiting the horror museum where he too falls under the spell of the wax figure of Salome
Sweets to the Sweet: John Reid (Christopher Lee) recently widowed man with a young daughter moves into the house. He hires a nanny Ann Norton (Nyree Dawn Porter) to look after the daughter when he is away on business and to take of her education. Ann grows increasingly concerned about the cold hostile way John treats his daughter and is even more worried to learn that it is out of fear of the girl. This one of those tales with a truly horrifying ending that is only implied rather than show it in all its gruesomeness
The last story is told to inspector Holloway by the estate agent leasing the house as it involves the case that he is working on.
The Cloak: This is the cheesiest and lightest of the stories. A pompous arrogant actor Paul Henderson (Jon Pertwee) moves into the house because it is close to the studio where he working on his latest schlock horror film with his co-star Carla Lind (Ingrid Pitt). Paul is not happy with e low budget efforts of his producers and is especially upset by the tacky cloak they have for his vampire character so he buys one himself in an old costumiers shop
The framing story here is a bit of an improvement over the thieving shits from the first film. This time we have a pair of private detectives looking into disappearance of a teenager by his mother. They go to house he was staying in and find piles of VHS cassettes all over the house. One detective goes to search the house while the other starts watching the videos to try and get to an idea of what is going on. Like the first film there are different uses of found footage to tell the stories
Phase1 Clinical Trials: This segment is about Herman (Adam Wingard), a man who has been given an experimental artificial eye that records everything it sees. He returns home and is having no problems until night comes and he starts seeing ghosts who also seem aware that he can see them. He learns from Clarissa (Hannah Hughes), a woman who recently had an ear implant, that he’s not he only one that this is happening to. The POV footage in this segment really worked nicely.
A Ride in the Park: An off-road cyclist (Jay Saunders) is wearing a helmet cam for his ride through the woods and he comes across zombies and rinds himself in ride of his life. This is really excellent use of the POV camera and I really liked this segment though it did feel short.
Safe Haven: A team of investigative journalists manage to convince a cult leader simply called Father (Epy Kusnandar) to let them film inside one of his compounds. They have normal large cameras and spy cameras so they can film anywhere Father doesn’t want them to. Father seems to have something big planned for their visit and what at first seems like a suicide cult turns out to be something much worse.
Slumber Party Alien Abduction: A teenager and his friends are bugging his older sister and friends with juvenile pranks which they film on their camcorders. One prank is putting a camera on their pet dog to film the sister with her boyfriend. While boyfriends is chasing them away they see lights over the lake and aliens arrive and you can probably guess what comes next just from the title of this segment.